October’s Ouachita Parish Class

October 28th, 2023

It was great to be back at the North Delta Training Academy in West Monroe, Louisiana. I wanted to thank Captain Chris Tolbird for hosting and his assistance in putting this class together. All of the folks working at the Academy (Kim) are of the highest level of professionalism. We truly consider ourselves part of the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s family.

This past week we completed another Basic FTO class. Deputies with the Ouachita Parish, on both sides of the house, Patrol and Corrections, attended. Officers with the West Monroe Police Department were also in attendance.

Many of the students are veteran trainers with their respective agencies and brought a great deal of experience to the class. This led to great conversations related to how they “used” to train their student officers verses how the San Jose Model is intended to be applied. Specifically discussed were some concerns and misunderstandings on how the numerical ratings and SEGs are to be utilized. Several attendees commented they feel more confident on how to utilize and apply the SJM when documenting the performance of their student officers, with a focus on Training Towards Success.

One student, an officer from West Monroe Police Department, commented, “Although I have been training deputies for two and a half years, I will be able to improve my ability to document acceptable/unacceptable performance in a more unbiased manner. Utilizing the SEGs to determine the score vs. what “I think” the score should be.”

Other students from the class also shared their thoughts after completing the course:

“This class was based on teaching and scoring in a way the helps the students gain the most knowledge for success in this job. I have gone to other FTO schools that were directed at only protecting the department and FTO from criminal and civil liability and nothing to help the student learn.” ~Deputy M. Yarbrough, Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office

“Sgt. Harris was an awesome instructor. The content in the class will be well used daily while training new students.” ~Deputy J. Purvis (AKA Dickerson), Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office

“Sgt. Harris was an easygoing instructor and broke the course down to make it easily understandable.” ~Deputy C. Albritton (AKA A. Mount), Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office


This class wraps up the 2023 year. If your agency is considering hosting either a Basic or a 2-day Refresher class, we are accepting requests for classes on a first come, first served basis. Currently we have two Basic (40-hour) FTO Classes scheduled in Everett, WA. in 2024.

If interested, just send us a text, or give us a call, and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Have a great rest of the year!


Sgt DJ Harris (Ret.)